he National Civil Rights Museum is proud to highlight the contributions of notable Black men with Men of Change: Taking it to the Streets. The outdoor exhibition from the Smithsonian will be on view in the museum’s Founders Park west of its main entrance starting Saturday, September 10.
Based on the SITES fine art exhibit Men of Change: Power. Triumph. Truth., the outdoor exhibition is free and open to the public until December 16, 2022. The “Taking it to the Streets” installation features multiple stand-alone and fence displays in the museum’s green space between Mulberry and South Main.
Men of Change: Taking it to the Streets presents the profiles of two dozen significant Black men across the decades. Through striking images and the poetic cadence of hip-hop language, visitors are invited to see these revolutionary men who have altered the history and culture of the country and learn from their journey. This outdoor installation highlights parallels between the past and present while telling stories of historical, cultural, political, and creative significance.
From Duke Ellington and Muhammad Ali to Kendrick Lamar and Alvin Ailey, the men of change are explored through the themes of storytellers, myth-breakers, fathering, community, imagining, catalysts, and loving. They transform professions, fight for justice, revolutionize art, and touch millions of lives. A diverse group of artists, advisors, academics, curators, and museum professionals determined the men chosen as Men of Change. The featured men represent many more individuals and the communities that shape them.
“We are excited to host Men of Change: Taking It to the Streets,” said Dr. Noelle Trent, the museum’s Director of Interpretation, Collections and Education. “As an outdoor installation, the exhibition offers an artistic interpretation of the history of Black men in the United States in the shadow of the Lorraine Motel.”
Moving beyond the boundaries of the museum’s walls, Men of Change: Taking it to the Streets offers a spot to meet, an opportunity for dialogue, and a connection to the community. The exhibition was developed by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibitions Service (SITES) and the Smithsonian’s Anacostia Community Museum. Supported by the Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of the Ford Motor Company, it is touring through 2022. For more information, visit civilrightsmuseum.org.